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R E V I E W : E C O L O G Y Phenotypic Plasticity in the Interactions

Summary: R E V I E W : E C O L O G Y
Phenotypic Plasticity in the Interactions
and Evolution of Species
Anurag A. Agrawal
When individuals of two species interact, they can adjust their phenotypes in response
to their respective partner, be they antagonists or mutualists. The reciprocal pheno-
typic change between individuals of interacting species can reflect an evolutionary
response to spatial and temporal variation in species interactions and ecologically
result in the structuring of food chains. The evolution of adaptive phenotypic
plasticity has led to the success of organisms in novel habitats, and potentially
contributes to genetic differentiation and speciation. Taken together, phenotypic
responses in species interactions represent modifications that can lead to reciprocal
change in ecological time, altered community patterns, and expanded evolutionary
potential of species.
henotypic plasticity is the ability of an
organism to express different pheno-
types depending on the biotic or abiotic
environment (Fig. 1). Single genotypes can
change their chemistry, physiology, develop-


Source: Agrawal, Anurag - Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology & Entomollogy, Cornell University


Collections: Environmental Sciences and Ecology